Allergies and Chinese Medicine
Itching red eyes, runny nose, sinus pressure, sneezing, and tired. You know the feeling? Sound familiar? Allergies…..
Millions of dollars are spent annually on “traditional” medications and allergy shots for the treatment of allergies. Allergies are a result of our bodies interacting with our environment – with foods, chemicals, and natural substances that we inhale, ingest or otherwise come in contact with. The immune system is designed to correctly identify between self and non-self. So when foreign bodies are encountered, the body reacts by manufacturing antibodies or releasing histamines.
Pollens, dusts molds and animal hairs contain protein antigens that stimulate an antibody response. Histamine and other chemicals are released causing an inflammatory reaction. The antigen-antibody reactions affect our organs and tissues, especially the mucous membranes, the lungs, skin and even our gastrointestinal tract. This can result in itchy watery eyes, runny and/or stuffy nose, sinus pressure, skin reactions, fatigue and headache.
So what is the cause of allergies? According to Oriental medicine, allergies are due to repeated invasion of the lungs by wind and cold. Normally, the weather will not have any detrimental effect on the body when it is strong enough to defend itself. The wind only becomes a cause of allergies when either the body is weak in relation to the weather or the weather is unseasonably excessive. In Oriental medicine the Defensive Qi that circulates on the skin and muscles to protect us from invasion of wind and cold. It is only when this protection becomes compromised that we are vulnerable to the elements of nature. Our Defensive Qi can be weakened due to lack of sleep, high stress, negative emotional states, and a poor diet. If our diet is fairly pure, we exercise regularly, our stress level is low, and our elimination is working well, we usually experience few allergic symptoms.
However, if we eat out often and compromise our diet, have a high stress lifestyle, exercise less or not at all, and have some temporary constipation we may experience sinus and respiratory problems, skin rashes or other allergic reactions. From the Oriental medical viewpoint these allergic reactions are the result of an imbalance in energies and organs in the body. Treatments include dietary modification, the use of specifically chosen herbal formulas, and acupuncture.
Allergies are just one of the many health concerns that Oriental medicine successfully treats. A treatment series will leave you breathing easy and feeling energized.
Call us and learn how you can be allergy free.